Back when it was in development, God of War director Cory Barlog was "adamant" not to make the game into an open world title. In an interview with Venture Beat, Barlog says that the team at Sony Santa Monica Studio couldn't possibly go toe-to-toe with existing open world blockbusters -- and it's not something that it wanted to do anyway.
"I was adamant that we couldn’t make an open world game. The cost of entry and the expectation level is so high that we’d never compete. We just don’t have the infrastructure and the systems. I don’t want to do that," Barlog explains.
"To do these things, to do the complexity [Ubisoft and Rockstar] have, you just need a lot of people. For us, not only do we not want to invest in that aspect of it, but to me the world needed to feel large, and not empty, but with surprising moments of discovery. It could feel like there were areas where there’s not a lot going on, and then all of a sudden an entirely new level opens up that you weren’t directed to, that you just discovered," he continues.
Barlog also goes into detail about why he wanted the term "wide linear" to catch on, as it better describes God of War's not-quite-open structure. "Once we started saying wide linear -- I didn’t have a term for it. One of the level designers actually started saying that. That was a good way to describe it, because I kept saying, 'not open world.' That’s the worst way to describe something, to say what it’s not. It’s better to give a good picture." Fair play.
Are you glad that God of War didn't end up as an open world reboot? Recall your axe in the comments section below.